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Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) (MA) (2023 Entry)

This image shows a cohort of diverse students in a TESOL classroom

Explore our Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages taught Master's degree.

Warwick's TESOL programme is designed with course features that will appeal to those who want to advance their career in English Language Teaching. This MA's structure allows Warwick to capture new, cutting-edge developments and showcase staff expertise in a growing range of specialist areas.

Course overview

The MA TESOL programme will help you develop an in-depth understanding of the links between research, theory and professional practice in the area of teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.

The programme has been designed for English language teachers with varying levels of professional experience, from teachers who have less than two years’ experience to those who have taught for many years. Potential students include teachers, teacher trainers, materials or curriculum developers, and other professionals who work in the area of second/foreign language education, either in the state sector or in private language institutes at primary, secondary or tertiary levels.

Skills from this degree

For this degree, skills that will be developed include:

  • Research skills (e.g. qualitative/quantitative research design and methods; action research, etc.)
  • Professional development skills (e.g. teaching, observing, mentoring, reflective practice)
  • Language teaching materials and lesson plan design skills (e.g. materials for young learners, adults, English for Specific Purposes etc.)
  • Language analysis skills (e.g. conversation analysis; discourse analysis)

General entry requirements

Minimum requirements

2:i undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline.

English language requirements

You can find out more about our English language requirementsLink opens in a new window. This course requires the following:

  • Band A
  • IELTS overall score of 6.5, (with 6.5 in writing).

International qualifications

We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications.

For more information, please visit the international entry requirements pageLink opens in a new window.

Additional requirements

There are no additional entry requirements for this course.

Core modules

Pathway 1 (students with less than the equivalent of two years’ full-time teaching experience)

Foundations of TESOL Methodology

This module provides a solid foundation in TESOL theory and practice. It explores both historical and contemporary developments in TESOL in order to give you a broad understanding of the field of English language teaching. Through such exploration, you are encouraged to reflectively engage with and develop your own beliefs about language learning and teaching, particularly in relation to educational contexts you are familiar with and/or will return to as a practising teacher.


Foundations of TESOL Professional Practice

This module is designed to complement the ‘Foundations of TESOL Methodology’ module which principally focusses on developing critical awareness of English language teaching approaches and methods. Approaches and methods will be further explored in this module, particularly through actual classroom teaching practice. For this, you will plan and design your own lessons in a collaborative environment with input from peers and tutors. More specifically, the module involves an action research style project which encourages you to reflect critically through observation and analysis of your own and your peers’ teaching, as well as through the research you do in relation to your own teaching.

Pathway 2 (students with more than two years’ full-time teaching experience)

Innovations in TESOL Methodology

TESOL is a forward-looking field, and new ideas and practices are constantly promoted. But what is really new, what kinds of change have most value, and how can innovation be brought about most appropriately? This module will help you consider innovations in TESOL in relation to your own teaching contexts. We introduce you to recent innovations, such as: technology; values; language; learning and assessment/resource-based ideas and practices. You will critically evaluate new ideas, according to provided frameworks and ones you will develop yourself. You're introduced to ideas on how to navigate and bring about change successfully, with reference to reflective practice, practitioner research, occupational psychology and innovation management.


Professional Practice in TESOL

This module will enable you to investigate aspects of published material including skills and language work, use of IT and considerations of critical pedagogy. You will work in collaboration or alone to produce material that could be used in a stated context for language teaching or language teacher education as well as an academic rationale for this.

Plus both Pathway 1 and Pathway 2 take the following core modules:

Sociolinguistics of English as Global Language

This module introduces you to key concepts in sociolinguistics, as reflected particularly in contemporary debates surrounding the nature of ‘language’ and ‘standard language’, multilingualism/bilingualism, and what it means to communicate ‘effectively’ and ‘appropriately’. Aspects of lingua franca communication, intercultural pragmatics and related issues of learner and teacher identity will also be addressed. On this basis, key challenges in the teaching of English as a global language in a classroom environment will be explored.

SLA Insights for TESOL Practice

This module explores areas of second language acquisition (SLA) research that are relevant to TESOL practice. It considers how SLA is affected by individual learner characteristics as well as social-interactive processes in the classroom, and focuses specifically on features of SLA that can be positively shaped by teachers.

Spoken Interaction

This module aims to develop skills in the collection, transcription and analysis of spoken interaction. You will focus on capturing samples of speech for analysis and teaching purposes; exploring the relationship between context and the construction of talk; understanding different approaches to the analysis of spoken interaction; applying conversation analysis to spoken interaction; and identifying the main features of classroom interaction. As well as learning how to capture spoken data and transcribe it, you will choose an area of analysis for your assignment. Students report that spoken interaction analysis tools are often helpful with dissertation research.

Approaches to Written Discourse

The module aims to teach you to understand, critically evaluate, and use a wide range of contemporary approaches suitable for the analysis of written discourse (in the broad sense) as linked to social setting, and to understand the pedagogic implications of such analyses.

Research Methods in TESOL

Designing and undertaking a small-scale research project independently is a core part of the programme. This module will take you through the process of writing a well-structured MA dissertation. It will encourage you to engage with and critically evaluate research in the broad field of TESOL, and familiarise you with different approaches to ethical research.

The module will cover a range of data collection methods and analytical options relevant to TESOL contexts. You will be encouraged to undertake research relevant to your own interests after formulating focused/answerable research questions. The module will also address questions about how to present an appropriately structured, clearly articulated proposal.


Optional modules

Optional modules can vary from year to year. Example optional modules may include:

  • Specialism in Classroom Motivation
  • Specialism in Teacher Education and Development
  • Specialism in Intercultural Language Teaching and Learning
  • Literature and Drama in TESOL
  • Management and Leadership in TESOL
  • Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in TESOL
  • Teaching and Researching Young Language Learners
  • Using Corpora for TESOL
  • Assessment in TESOL
  • Practical Teaching Methodology
  • English for Academic and Professional Purposes


Modules are taught by a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Importance is placed on research-led teaching and developing students’ understanding of research principles and methods, as well as the ability to reflect on the relationship between theory, research and practice.

In term three, you will work closely with a dissertation supervisor to complete your own research project. The dissertation draws on the academic and professional knowledge and interests you have developed in terms one and two, and is closely linked to work you have done in the research methods module.

Class sizes

Class size will vary depending on type of module (core or optional) and teaching session (lecture or seminar), ranging from around 10 students (for some optional modules) to around 80+ students (for core module lectures).

Typical contact hours

There are 10 weeks in each term. For both terms one and two, you will usually have 8 weeks of teaching contact with the remainder of each term dedicated to module-related reading, assignment work and optional tutorials.


Assessment on the programme is by coursework and final dissertation - there are no formal examinations. The following are example types of coursework you might submit for assessment on the MA:

  • Written assignment (e.g. a 2,000-word assignment which includes an appropriately referenced literature review)
  • Teaching materials/lesson plans with rationale
  • Blog writing (e.g. blogging about useful ICT tools for ELT)
  • Language analysis

Reading lists

Most departments have reading lists available through Warwick Library. If you would like to view reading lists for the current cohort of students you can visit our Warwick Library web pageLink opens in a new window.

Your timetable

Your personalised timetable will be complete when you are registered for all modules, compulsory and optional, and you have been allocated to your lectures, seminars and other small group classes. Your compulsory modules will be registered for you, and you will be able to choose your optional modules when you join us.

Your career

Previous Master's graduates from the department have gone on to work for employers including: British Council, Ernst & Young and National Geographic Learning.

Graduates have pursued roles such as: teaching professionals; teacher trainers, academic lecturers, educational consultants, and more.

Our department has a dedicated professionally qualified Senior Careers Consultant offering impartial advice and guidance together with workshops and events throughout the year. Previous examples of workshops and events include:

  • Linguistics Careers
  • CV Workshop
  • Interview preparation
  • Making the most of your time at Warwick and securing work experience opportunities
  • Securing placements and work experience
  • Warwick careers fairs throughout the year

Applied Linguistics at Warwick

Apply your learning from day one.

With a history dating back to 1983, Applied Linguistics at Warwick has diversified over the years from a main focus on English language teaching and teacher education to include expertise in areas such as: intercultural communication, professional communication, the sociolinguistics of language use, the teaching and learning of languages other than English.

Find out more about us on our website.

Our Postgraduate Taught courses

Our Postgraduate Research courses

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are payable for each year of your course at the start of the academic year, or at the start of your course, if later. Academic fees cover the cost of tuition, examinations and registration and some student amenities.

Taught course fees  Research course fees

Fee Status Guidance

The University carries out an initial fee status assessment based on information provided in the application and according to the guidance published by UKCISA. Students are classified as either Home or Overseas Fee status and this can determine the tuition fee and eligibility of certain scholarships and financial support.

If you receive an offer, your fee status will be stated with the tuition fee information, however we are awaiting guidance from the UK government regarding fee status for EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members living in the UK for academic year 2021/22 onwards. We are not able to confirm the fee status for these students until the relevant eligibility criteria have been confirmed. Once we have received further information from the UK government, we will provide you with an update on your fee status and let you know if any additional information is required. If you believe your fee status has been incorrectly classified you can complete a fee status assessment questionnaire (follow the instructions in your offer) and provide the required documentation for this to be reassessed.

The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) provides guidance to UK universities on fees status criteria, you can find the latest guidance on the impact of Brexit on fees and student support on the UKCISA website.

Additional course costs

Please contact your academic department for information about department specific costs, which should be considered in conjunction with the more general costs below, such as:

  • Core text books
  • Printer credits
  • Dissertation binding
  • Robe hire for your degree ceremony

Scholarships and bursaries

Scholarships and financial support

Find out about the different funding routes available, including; postgraduate loans, scholarships, fee awards and academic department bursaries.

Living costs

Find out more about the cost of living as a postgraduate student at the University of Warwick.

Please visit our departmental MA TESOL webpage to find out more about our departmental scholarships and bursaries and how to apply under the ‘Fees and funding’ tab.

Find out how to apply to us, ask your questions, and find out more.

Taught course applications

Here is our checklist on how to apply for taught postgraduate courses at Warwick.

Research course applications

Here is our checklist on how to apply for research postgraduate degrees at the University of Warwick.

After you’ve applied

Find out how we process your application.

Applicant Portal

Track your application and update your details.

Admissions statement

See Warwick’s postgraduate admissions policy.

Join a live chat

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Postgraduate Open Day

Our Postgraduate Virtual Open Day will help you find out more about your course of interest, as well as general topics like applying to Warwick, accommodation, careers and funding.
Please register your interest to be the first to hear when booking opens.

Postgraduate fairs

Throughout the year we attend exhibitions and fairs online and in the UK. These events give you the chance to learn about our Master's and PhD study routes, and the wider context of postgraduate study.

Find out more

Live chats

Every week, you can connect directly with representatives from Warwick, who will be answering your questions on applying to and studying postgraduate studies at Warwick.

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Departmental events

Some academic departments hold events for specific postgraduate programmes, these are fantastic opportunities to learn more about Warwick and your chosen department and course.

See our online departmental events

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